Two Ins And Two Outs That Must Happen At Brighton And Hove Albion
Brighton fans are gearing up for their first season as a top-flight club in more than a generation. Chris Hughton, just as he did with Newcastle in 2010, has led his side to the promised land of the Premier League and expectations are high that Brighton can make the move last for long.
To realise their impressive ambitions, the south coast side will naturally have to improve their squad and replace the dead wood. So what do Brighton need to do to improve their squad sufficiently? Here we look at two key ins and outs which may need to happen this summer in order for them to be competitive.
Brighton are in a relatively unique position with both their recognised right-backs getting on in years. Despite Bruno being the eldest at 36, he has played most of the games in the league this season and remains the club captain. He signed a one-year contract extension in March.
It’s unlikely that the Spaniard will leave the club completely. But a younger, quicker full-back will be needed for Premier League football and that may really leave 32-year-old Rosenior with nowhere to go in this squad. It looks like Chris Hughton is already planning for this.
Brighton have not gained promotion by virtue of sitting back and just defending solidly. They are an expressive, forward-thinking team and those playing in advanced positions are expected to contribute. Just 2 goals in 40 appearances since joining Brighton are therefore not great figures for Skalak.
If the Czech Republic international cannot score regularly at Championship level, it is possible that he will be unable to do so in the Premier League. Hence, he may be the one to make way, leaving Jamie Murphy to support the striker along with Anthony Knockaert on the other side.
Should Rosenior leave the club in the summer then Brighton will obviously need to strengthen here. Of course, the young Tyler Hornby-Forbes was signed last year to cover this position but he is one for the future and so Brighton need someone of Premier League quality, with Carl Jenkinson of Arsenal already being linked.
Brighton’s front line have rather shared the goals around this season in the Championship. 11 goals each for Tomer Hemed and Sam Baldock – both of whom are in their late-20’s, have added to the 22 goals netted by main target man Glenn Murray.
Murray is now 33-years-old and the fact that his previous spells in the Premier League with Crystal Palace and Bournemouth have yielded a total of 11 goals creates doubts on whether he can fire them to safety if they get promoted.